Jessica Long take Paralympic medal career total to 26
Para swimming superstar Jessica Long of the United States continues to prevail in her medal quest at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics, taking Silver in the women’s 400m freestyle S8 yesterday.
The five-time Paralympian, who had led for the majority of the race, was beaten to the Gold by fellow countrywoman Morgan Stickney, who powered past her in the final few metres.
The 29-year-old Long, now has a medal of every colour from Tokyo, after she won Bronze in the women’s 100m backstroke S8, and Gold in the women’s 200m individual medley SM8 which was a four-peat in the event.
Her third podium first in Japan means Long’s total Paralympic medal count now stands at an astonishing 26. And that figure could still grow.
America’s second most decorated Paralympian will have two more opportunities to secure even more silverware in the women’s 100m breaststroke SB7 and the women’s 100m butterfly S8 taking place later this week.
It is not just medals that make Jessica Long one of the most revered Paralympic athletes.
Like every Paralympian, Long’s journey to the Games is quietly exceptional and earlier this year it took centre stage in Toyota’s NFL Super Bowl 55 commercial.
The advert powerfully captures the heart of Long’s story and subsequently touched the millions of people that have gone on to see it.
Speaking to the International Paralympic Committee back in February about her television, appearance the American expressed her pride: “It’s been 18 years in the making, 18 years for this type of coverage for the Paralympics and for my story. I feel so undeserving,” Long shared.
“It’s one of my top three moments.”
“I would say winning a gold medal is extraordinary because nobody can take it away from you.”
“There are moments like when I was training with the greatest Olympian of all-time, Michael (Phelps), who called me J.Lo, that was very special, and then being in the Super Bowl. It’s just so cool.”